Diversity at Rutgers University-Newark
Diversity at RU-N: Key References in the Strategic Plan
“…for Rutgers University–Newark, excellence lies at the intersection of commitments to boundary-crossing scholarship, diverse talent cultivation, and engagement as an anchor institution in the world through collaboration—all of which are precisely what the public increasingly is demanding of higher education in the 21st century.”
Cover Letter from Chancellor Nancy Cantor, page 4
“Our distinctive excellence is exemplified by the range and diversity of the life experiences, talents, and aspirations of our undergraduate, graduate, and professional students. Ensuring support for them all along the continuum from recruitment to graduation and career success is mission-critical in this strategic plan.”
“Diversity is an enduring value and practice for RU-N. The strategic planning process pushed for an enhanced and deeper role for diversity in the institution’s work and operations. Diversity enhances excellence of ideas, innovation, learning, teaching, civic dialogue, and engagement. Building on the strong base of diversity of people, RU-N intends to use diversity evermore as a value that creates new knowledge and partnerships in all that we do, including making space for new voices in our anchor institution partnership work.”
“…RU-N’s remarkable diversity is much more than ‘a feel-good slogan,’ as students, faculty, and staff members pointed out in town hall meetings this spring, it profoundly improves scholarship and learning.”
“We are scholars, teachers, staff, and administrators on a mission to serve the public good by playing our part in advancing knowledge and educating the magnificently diverse next generation of students who are absolutely brimming with talent, intellect, energy, and potential. We know that we do all of this more effectively when we do it together with partners from across the public, private, and nonprofit sectors—eschewing the traditional higher education ‘cult of the expert’ for ‘communities of experts’—because that diversity of perspectives yields better results. We see our students as the future leaders in industry, academia, government, the sciences and culture—and, equally important, as informed and engaged citizens. For us, diversity is not just a happenstance of our situation; it is a defining element of our identity and a purposeful and central aim of our work. We see ourselves as both representing and embracing the richness and complexity of today’s world. For, on one hand, this is a world defined by increasingly “borderless” activities connected through technology, a global economy, and migration. On the other hand, we live in a world deeply divided and in some peril over inter-ethnic, national, religious, racial, and other cultural conflicts. Therefore, it is the task of a great urban research university not to shy away from but rather to be fully in and of that world—and this vision is intended to build upon the traditions and assets of Rutgers–Newark to do just that in our next steps forward.”
Strategic Priority 7. Leverage Our Diversity and Build Civic Dialogue
“A recurrent theme in the listening tours and charrette dialogues was making the most of our diversity and the diversity around us in Newark and the region, as well as its connections nationally and globally. To fully leverage who we are and who we can be as a university community, we need to be cognizant of both the many dimensions of diversity richly represented here—including, for example, the extraordinary range of heritage languages of our students, faculty, and staff—and the complex way in which those different dimensions intersect within an individual, and across the tapestry of our community. Diversity must be “unpacked” as a nuanced construct of modern life and social experience, and then its multi-faceted impact recognized as an enormous asset to scholarship, pedagogy, civic life, and community well-being. We need to deliberately foster “dialogues across difference” and build on the full range of experiences, opinions, values, cultural traditions encompassed here, both in the curriculum, and in public events and convenings. This means bringing many peoples together, from within and outside our university, often in new combinations and settings—such as the Brick City Conversations with leaders of community-based organizations and civic leaders already being facilitated by the Cornwall Center. It also means continuing the kinds of democratic participatory dialogues and problem solving and story-telling that this strategic planning process itself has involved. In so doing not only will we leverage our remarkable diversity but we will strengthen our shared governance and co-ownership across university-community, public-private, academic-non-academic, citizen-scholars, generations, groups, and geographies of our joined futures. Leveraging diversity is a broad exercise in continuous institutional reflection—not an easy task accomplished by one-shot investment—and so we will establish a study group to consider the many avenues for building on this signature strength of Rutgers University–Newark in all of its richness.”
“We want everyone to know and talk about Rutgers University–Newark as the place where excellence embraces diversity, where cutting edge scholarship and social impact positively collide, where opportunity is not bestowed on a select few, but deliberately cultivated for many, where those many graduate as the elite, as the leaders, professionals and citizens so needed for tomorrow.”
Since 1997, the first year that U.S. News & World Report began ranking colleges on the diversity of their student bodies, U.S. News has rated Rutgers University-Newark the most diverse national university in the United States; no other school has been so recognized. Now, university leaders are seeking to build on the institution’s legacy of inclusiveness.
A timeline for the Newark campus.
Embracing all cultures and perspectives is a Universitywide goal.
What’s available on and off-campus.
Perspectives from students and alumni.
How we reach across boundaries.
A guide for students, faculty and staff.
We want to help make your transition to college life as smooth as possible, and your college experience rewarding and productive.